Observing the Observer

Observing, naming, creating stories gives reality to our perceptions of the universe, which is creating itself for us. Observing the world causes it to shape itself into a reality for us.

In the current issue of The American Scholar, Robert Lanza, a proponent of Biocentrism, which builds on quantum physics, writes, "the laws of the world were somehow created to produce the observer....the observer in a significant sense creates reality and not the other way around."


If subatomic particles are "watched" traveling through a barrier (in the famous experiment, a box with two holes), they behave like tiny particles, and go through one hole or the other.

If they're "notwatched" they pass through both holes, like waves.

But no-one sees this.

Quantum waves are never observed, only inferred from the behaviour of unobserved particles.

Quantum waves are waves of probability, statistical predictions, not material waves, hence nothing but a likely outcome. Outside…

Krishna was a Butter Thief

Logic is tiresome, like madness. The brown suede cover of my pocket calendar, the one in which I write, was the back of a cow once. Tanned, dyed, stretched. I will not make a metaphor out of this. It was the book that I bought when I promised to jot notes, any notes, regularly. Pencil swatting words on the fly. Discreetly. Grab at slips of thoughts before they slip away. It's the layer below the layer. A veiny map of words pulsing with blood. A cow's shroud, but see, there I go. The skin of a cow covers my book. The skin that was composed from soft grasses that were nibbled and mulched through four stomachs until the ingredients could be usefully used. To make skin cells. Dermatitis of words. Scribbled suede.

It is the hair that seems wrapped on a bone, that sticks out at jagged angles, that I like best. She pushes the mail cart like a hospital bed. Back and forth, three times a day, every day. Slow, cow steps. Bovine mail delivery. I must get cows off the mind. Really, as I si…

The day illusions fell

This prose poem is dedicated to that magnifique intellectual and poet par excellence, John Walter. Some of the lines in this piece came from a comment I left at his moving poem, Nepenthe. It's also dedicated to my close confidant, Kaj, who received this prose poem as a voice mail message when he didn't answer his Treo, and for which I was generously thanked. Thank you, such beautiful men...
And to Sky, whose photographs and writing of the flowers in her garden inspired the imagery of the last paragraph, so sumptuous they ebulliently began blossoming over here.

encrypted poem

Early March 2007, Toronto

Oh, those years on the earth...

It's my birthday, the double high-five. Nothing special, but I did buy a silk dress which I am wearing at work. Perhaps I'll try to compose some images and see what might emerge from them. It's a difficult day for me, began at 5:15am with sadness, but I'm being brave... and trying to make it like any other day, ignoring the undercurrents, their deep swelling. It's not the age - I celebrate that, seeing myself as only half way through. But, oh, losses, family, really my Dad, such a long time ago now, the ways in which one is honoured, cherished, treasured and loved. Being born was the best and worst thing that ever happened to me, and can I say that after all these years? Does anyone understand this? It's not an easy day. Tomorrow I will probably go to a performance in celebration of International Women's Day with some women friends and celebrate quietly then. Oh, should I post this?I'll update this as I write it. Please forgive how blatantly emotional.


Fragments of Images

Friday March 2, 2007

encrypted first draft of poems

Template for the Random Accelerator

Mountain of Seeds

Dug into a remote mountain near the North Pole, a seed vault. One hundred and twenty meters (364 ft) inside a mountain on Spitsbergen, one of the islands of Svalbard. Insurance for the future. The Norwegian government is spending $5 million to house 3 million seeds. A passageway, an inner chamber constructed. Doors locking the tunnel, the vault. Seeing a future of severe climate change, devastation. Or our favourite grains bred out. Permafrost will refrigerate if the cooling system fails. Once it's built and filled with the chosen seeds, it will be checked yearly. There are seed banks around the world- one in the Philippines destroyed by a typhoon. Even if the Arctic melts, horrors of global warming under the depleting ozone layers, models of the mountains of Svalbard predict safety.

Surely we will forget. One year the person who is to check will be sick, or their child will be dying, or there will be a war, or they will be too old and tired to remember to pass the combination on. …


As I write in my notebook, I look over at candies lined in large canisters as a rainbow of dyed sugar across the wall at the "...Sweet~Factory." Where, later, I will buy chocolates, after sipping a bowl of Miso, a perfectly flavoured broth of nourishment, in the empty Japanese restaurant that is arranged like a cafe on the red granite floor of the underground concourse. It is quiet here, where I come to write, to take a break from the tedium of the job upstairs, the repetition of information which I transfer meme-like from Word file to Excel chart.
On Dawkins concept of Memes: "structured units of knowledge that are able, more or less, to reproduce themselves by making copies of themselves from one mind to another." Marvin Minsky.A system of ideas can evolve by itself through structured units of knowledge that are able to reproduce themselves by making copies from one mind to the next, without biological change. Without life, or death. Simply being carried in neuron…

Falling into Light...

On the Monsieur posts...

My Monsieur posts rarely garner comments; it's as if they're too intimate, or perhaps somehow inaccessible. Yet surely we all live on those strange borders between each other. My present relationship is enabling me to explore that edge of uncertainty. I don't believe even in a 20 or 50 year marriage it's ever gone, it might get buried under habit, in patterned thoughts about each other, in the expectations familiarity breeds. And when he or she suddenly has an affair, or becomes ill, or dies, the constructed life falls apart, for that is all it ever was, and the very contingency of our existence becomes exposed again. I would like to remain in that place of openness to the fragility of our relationships. To remain sensitive. We are always disappearing away from each other, even in our most stable, long term relationships. While we know death is inevitable, what we forget is its unpredictability. Perhaps people don't comment on those posts because it brings the unpr…

Burning Light

encrypted prose poem Clarice Lispector, The Apple in the Dark, trans Gregory Rabassa (London: Virago, 1967), p.237-8.

Light-Producing Organs


Not much going on muse-wise lately. But still enjoying my revealing dreams... this has much resonance with where I'm currently working. And makes me wonder...

I am working in an elevator as a receptionist for a large bank. There are three of us at a long desk. As the elevator goes up and down, the building shakes. The doors never seem to open, though.

On break I have to go to another building and take its elevator down.

Instead of a normal concourse level, I find a Third World-type mall that is empty. It's dark, and there are only a few lights. I walk around to the other side of the mall where there are fields that I can only see as far as the lights of the mall reveal. It could be a Caribbean Island. In the fields men are walking towards me. Dark-skinned men. They are walking like zombies.

I realize that, though I am an older woman, the place is deserted and I am alone, and I get scared. So I run back around the mall, and take the elevator up and go back to my job as a receptioni…


A crescent moon is in the back of my throat, not white, from reflected sunlight, but the dark side of the moon, what is never seen, and it doesn't hurt, but my throat feels thick and thirsty and so I wake up and sip some water.

The feeling of a crescent moon in the back of my throat persists, even now weeks later I still feel it, magical, mystical.
I dreamt I left my natural Jaipur Oriental Musk perfume oil in its small round red box at Wealth Management.

Meaning, I must go back to the job, since I'd never be without my bliss-enhancing musk perfume oil.
It was 4am and the phone rang a hesitant half-ring, but I must have been dreaming.

Some revelatory phone conversations with different people in different situations happened over the next two days, however. Where there was deception, truth emerged. I'm still shaken. Even dancing this morning, I found myself crying, something that has happened to many others but never to me in 10 years of this particular dance practice. Wh…


Syntax, structured coherencies, letting go to enter the streams-of-consciousness writing. But see how chromosomes are packaged. Tighter than any sonnet. We are form, and bound to form. Still, to untrain my mind, I allow emergences. We each experience the quality of the world differently, the qualia, but there are points, nodes, of happenings, in the world, in the event continuum, around which I gather my thoughts as I write this.

Browsing the news, I find a skeleton of pins, bars and a plate around Barbaro's leg, which is already held by a matrix of screws. The abscess, pummel of pus. Prize racehorse with a splintered leg. Laminitis. Later in the day, Barbaro is put down.

I'm reading Jean-Luc Nancy: "Isn't life always an escape from death? And this escape from death - which at the same time doesn't cease moving towards death, of course - which is it if not life itself..." " survives, that is, it is always on the escape, skimming non-existence, conting…

Glint of the Green Cat's Eye

Embroidered flowers, relation to real-world flowers undetermined, perhaps fuchsia daisies and tawny buttercups and peach poinsettias. Thought is vision-based. It transforms through the insula, physical signals from the body, sensations into feelings. Neurocircuitry. I am a wired world. The sensitivity of the central nervous system transforms the world out there into the one in here. I perceive strokes of coloured yarn as flowers with indistinct reference to actual flowers dancing on hillsides of brown earth.

Head-strong, body-wise.

Information comes in so many ways.

Should I tell a story? That's a different shaping of events. Pick a narrative, a point of view. Paint representation in words. Describe a mutually-agreed upon approach to a scene.

On my finger is a thick silver ring set with a black stone in which there is a green cat's eye.

Carvings on a snake-shaped rock, arrow-heads 70,000 years old lying nearby, in a cave hidden in the "Mountain of the Gods" in Botswana. O…

Flames of Insight Curling on the Edges of the Burning Paper

You create this writing. Yes, you do. I write the words, their coherencies dancing to my inner rhythms, but you create the meaning that the words impart. You, the reader, control my writing. Okay, that is going a little far, but I do write for your reading. When you completely miss the point of what I wrote I think it's me, not you. I wasn't clear enough; it's not that you have problems with comprehension, though in my darker moments I will admit I've thought this.There are different groups of readers too. Who comprehend differently from each other. Offering your writing to different groups can be an interesting experience. But I won't get into that. Oh, and whoever leaves the first comment often defines how that piece will be interpreted and responded to. I often make it a point not to read the other comments until I've commented. I want a pure connection with the writing that doesn't need to line up with the 'group-think' because it's sure of …


Should a flower not open to the sun because there is nightfall?

Should a flower, soft, delicate, trusting, not blossom magnificently, brilliant unfurling full petals, splashing perfume, colour to the world, inviting pollination, growing rich seeds for the future, pods full of grace, because the sun is swallowed up by darkness?

Outside, looking in.

Metaphors aren't arising. Something resists them. It's a constructed world that perhaps is a metaphor for its own processes. Of corporate wealth built on bodies of work. Of living off the crème of interest payments. Capitalism is "borrowing from the future."1 These wide berths of marble pillars and floors and tabletops, of huge glass chandeliers and sophisticated stores, of pin stripe people, confident but wary, built on profits from debt payments. What enables one to have what one can't afford, now. Purchases contingent on future payments that gouge the paychecks of the present. A future that barely exists, or does as a distant phantom. All around me at the Food Court where I sip coffee and write in my notebook, not the upper echelons of power but office staff. Thin plastic credit cards already overloaded, mortgages, car payments. And a disjuncture in the metaphors of financial power that the structures are a concretization of. Profits from the excesses of the m…

Relation Of

Monsieur, you can't be possessed. Any woman who would try to possess you doesn't understand you.

One can only come into a relation of love with you.

How did...

How did you write that poem? How did you paint that painting? How did you find that friend? How did you know to be in that place at that particular time? How did you know how to escape that situation or choose that deal?

Unrepeatable and beyond explanation. Nor can you properly impart the sense of wonder you felt at what happened.

The series of apparently random coincidences that occurred to get you from point A to C were actually specific. A specific sequence. Intuition got you there.

It's a trustworthy navigator.

But requires 'letting go.'

In this way, it is akin to religious belief.

Living your prayer; living your wishes.

Putting aside your tiny maps and trusting that you know the way.

Let go. And find what you are looking for.

'Self-Portrait in Bathroom Mirror' Shots

Bought a new sweater today, have a new job, may be moving into a new apartment, a whole lot of new things, I guess. Not great photos, but what the heck...


What position doesn't fluctuate? If the real is what returns to itself, can I? How can I stop the constant shifting, my heart, my muse?

Monsieur, I cannot flow in one direction. Despite effort, a contradictoriness. Potent feelings flow in opposite directions, collide, aren't neat, contained, tidy or even explicable. While I would like to not be confused, unsure, and have only my own fears to battle, I am a storm of paradoxes.

Always departing, never arriving.

Can writing write this impossibility? Such honour of the heart.

I curve and sway with your rhythms in a dance of intimacy. We are a single flower, padma lotus, spectral whiteness of prisms, following an inner light, its lightning, even as the moon's tides surge in us.

It happened suddenly, in the quietness of the moment.

Afterwards, enwrapped, arms of peace, and a peace that lasts for many days. And then the breaking, chaos swirls over.

There is a way through. A way through the resisting what we are approaching, pulling away…

Jazz Riff, or an Autopoiesis

No intervals. It’s not what they say- no gaps.
Continuous from the first moment.
Only different approaches.
I sway back and forth like a stripped mast in high gale.
After, it doesn’t stop.
I am speechless;
This whirling back,
intoxicated to find the illusion I was chasing.1

Photo from the Brazilian designer, Sandra Machado's Collection, Noiva.
Vestido Corset em organdi, renda e cetim de seda
Design Sandra Machado
Foto Isabela Carrari
Modelo: Carolina de Siqueira Meneses
(used with permission)
____ Autopoiesis: auto(self)creation, "organized states that remain stable for long periods of time despite matter and energy continually flowing through them." Wikipedia

1The last stanza references Clarice Lispector's, The Apple in the Dark (Virago, 1985, trans. Gregory Rabassa), "as if he had caught up to an illusion he had been chasing all his life and had touched it in the midst of his own intoxication" (p.44).

Would you trust this woman...?

My boyfriend is away. Did I say I had a boyfriend? How very unusual for me to admit to such a thing! I never have 'boyfriends,' I only have connections that may or may not be called relationships, and yet towards whom I remain utterly faithful until he abandons me. Or I him. It always happens. And things somehow continue to continue after a respite too. I don't think I live in a world of normal intimate relationships, whatever those may be. To say, I have a 'boyfriend,' balks on my tongue. It feels like ownership. Like settling into someone else's definition. Like something people can make judgments about. Like an incredibly weird sort of dalliance of sex and fun with a little angst thrown in that is so strange that I'd almost rather not. So I make mysterious references to whatever might or might not be going on in my life at any given time. Men I love, and who love me. Yes, always that. Honoured. Of course. Treated with respect, kindness, generosity. Alway…


Memory is a coordinating system. When you start losing your memory, you lose the coordinates of your mapping system, the one inside your mind that helps you negotiate all the terrains from the past to the present to the expectancies of the future. A coordinating system that is multi-dimensional, composed of inner and outer landscapes. Whose latitudes and longtidues are strands of narratives composed of interpretations of memories. Memory: what repeats itself. If a coordinate is touched, awakens, it opens out that area of the map and all the strands of narratives connected to it. Until it falls apart, senility, dementia, Alzeimer's, stroke, aneurysm, until the memories slip off the narratives like beads tumbling off a broken necklace.

She's lost the narrative of the streets. She can't remember where she lives, or the directions home. She thinks buildings long gone are still there. She can't remember what she said five minutes ago. What was a finely woven grid of electro-…


Yesterday, a day of inner communing. In dialogue with key people in my life, psychically, spiritually. Does anyone else do this? Talk to people you are not talking to? So many responses flood back!What I am curious about is the intention - the thought behind the thought, where directions are decided, approaches, withdrawals, what the issues are, what new variables have entered our field of connections. When I enter into this kind of communing I am amazed at how variable we are, hour to hour we make and unmake our minds on nearly everything. Once I gently plummet and discover the main feelings and intentions, though, all the actions and words make sense. Knowing someone does this, psyches out others, even if gently and with only the best intention to love, honour, respect, I have some questions. Would you veil yourself if you knew I was plummeting you? Discovering if you truly love life or are staking your belief on what is actually a philosophy of death? Finding out if you are produci…

To Stay, or To Go, That is the Question

Should I stay, or move on?

This question central in many facets of my life presently. Yet even the new vistas we explore become continuations of the old issues from which we cannot escape. The larger ones, that are like the song we continually sing of our lives. I am always ready to move on; staying becomes a challenge that really is the musical score I dance. Leaving is easy, staying is hard, and knowing this doesn't make it any easier. There is nowhere to go anyhow. All new scenarios become reflections of all the old scenarios until you understand that you cannot escape yourself. If you cannot escape from yourself you might as well relinquish resistance to whatever it is in the present circumstance that you want to leave. Life certainly has its own logic but it is most irrational in its insistence on keeping you on your path of challenges no matter whether you stay or move on!

Portal of the New Year


In the steam, you disappear. Monsieur, I feel your presence only by knowing. You sit before me until you vanish; hot clouds dissolve us into vapour. Your strong sensuality, like Zeus, yet you become a phantom. Until I am alone. When the hot breath of air presses in on me your hands rest on mine, our knees touch. Two figures of naked skin streaming as the steam subsides. It was in the room you built, this womb of steam from which we emerge wet and hot into the cold air of the welcoming night.


How deeply
the unfolding
through the water
of the blessings of
our bodies of rapture.

We are clothed in the streaming truth of
the night sky, its melting snow.

An offering
to fire and transparency.

In the hot springs as the clouds uncover
the full moon of the New Year
you plunge into me
while I dance in the water,
surging, volcanic.

Waves of heat
absorb us

Into an immensity that has no name.

In the creative presence of sensuality
our union effaces the conditions of union.

The essence of passionate love
is …

Happy New Year's 2007

After dancing for hours to the beat of 30 or 40 ecstatic drummers on African drums, walking home past groups of revellers and noisy happy nightclubs, near dawn, I took this to celebrate the New Year with you...

During this festive time of the birth of the light, of the New Year, wishing you pure magic and joy, prosperity and success.

That the dance of impermanence flows with agility, grace, openess, love.